The Oregon Ducks started the 2013 NCAA season strong. The team turned in an amazing 17-2 record and looked like they were one of the best teams in college basketball. An unplanned foot injury that took out starting guard Dominic Artis changed all of that.
Artis had started all 19 games for Oregon prior to his injury. The freshman guard had posted an average of 10.2 points per game, while also contributing in assists and steals. With Artis sidelined, Oregon went 5-4 and quickly fell down the rankings and conference standings.
The Ducks got Artis back earlier than expected, but his form was questioned. In the six games since he returned, Artis shot 7-26 (.269) and scored an average of 3.3 points per game. Artis failed to contribute offensively, with a high of six points since the injury.
Oregon limped to the end of the season and posted a 27-8 record. In the PAC-12, Oregon went 12-6 and earned an at-large bid in the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Artis finished the season with an average of 8.5 points per game and led the team with 3.4 assists per contest.
Ducks fans got some good news as Artis looked to be in original form Thursday. In Oregon’s opening round upset over No. 5 Oklahoma State, Artis had 13 points, hitting double digits for the first time since January. Artis played only 17 minutes, but went 4-7 from the field, including 1-3 from long distance. At the free throw line, Artis went 4-5. Artis also had two rebounds, an assist and four steals.
Oregon looked impressive in the game and pulled the 68-55 upset in dominating fashion. Many questioned Oregon getting such a low seed (12) in the tournament. With Artis back to form, the Ducks are poised to show they were seeded too low.